Oak beams are still quite popular, and have been featured in numerous English houses for centuries. Initially, oak was appreciated for being durable, strong, weather-resistant and insect-resistant. If installing oak beams, you may go for the new air-dried beams or even the reclaimed ones. Reclaimed beams ought to be cleaned and properly treated before fitting. You should thus seek a company that provides you with a full-preparation package.
Reclaimed Oak Beams
Reclaimed beams are different lengths of solid oak that have been removed or sourced from a certain building for re-use. The idea is basically to recycle an old product in producing something new and useful again. These beams may have been sourced from barns, some castles and barns. Given the variety of the places where these beams are removed from, it’s easy to clearly see how such beams can bring a new and unique character to your home instantly.
These beams offer good stability, hence perfect for almost all kinds of interior construction, barn conversions, period restoration and decorative uses. Below are some advantages of reclaimed oak beams:
Having been naturally air-dried during their precious use, they are quite stable and less prone to movement.
The colour of the beams has developed fully into a highly desirable, rich tone.
They’ll show several signs of their age. They’ll have developed individual characteristics such as knurls, natural twists, knots, cracks, bows and curves. Some of them may even show several signs of their previous use such as nail holes.
They’re perfect for combined use with existing aged oak beams, especially for repairs, renovations and building extensions.
Sale of Reclaimed Oak Beams
The demand for these beams is gradually increasing over the years, as more and more people look to bringing and enhancing character into their homes. This increasing demand has however, led to a developed tendency of sellers passing off newer wood as antique. In fact, some do get away with this since it’s quite difficult to identify the older materials, unless the wood gets cut open. The latter is rarely done since it can leave the materials in a relatively less desirable state.
Such oak beams are usually de-nailed and cleaned up before they’re sold by getting rid of any traces of decaying timber. Layers of paint are also removed using a high-pressure jet wash. This whole process doesn’t produce smooth finish, but instead strives at maintaining the original beam characteristics.
The edges of the beams can be softened by chamfering any notable square edges. The edges can also be scalloped to add further characteristics. Some sellers do provide shot-blasting, anti-infestation treatment, sanding, oiling, polishing and waxing. The beams may be supplied uncut or machined to your specifications.
Oak beams make a great, appealing addition to any of your building renovations. They are also able to add a period look to any of your property, and this has become much popular in modern building work. Oak beams can be used as a mantel for your fireplace. This would be a great idea, especially if you’re planning to incorporate reclaimed beams into your home. They can be cut and accordingly fitted to your measurements by a specialist company. Given the fact that oak is a traditional material, you should seek services of a reputable company with notable knowledge and expertise in traditional installation techniques.